Posted: Jul 21, 2012 4:42 PM by Heath Heggem
All livestock producers take precautions to protect their animals, but they can't always be prepared for all of Montana's predators.
Three sheep ranches in the prairies of the golden triangle of north-central Montana suffered losses to a single grizzly bear and her cub.
In all, the bears killed 70 sheep in a matter of days.
Aaron Jones, a rancher near Conrad, lost 58 sheep from his band of around 2,500; the precautions he took to protect his herd were no match for grizzlies.
Jones noted, "We have Great Pyrenees dogs out with the sheep. They keep the coyotes out, we haven't had any wolf problems so far. I think that day's coming. We can keep the coyotes out, we had dogs in with that band of sheep and they didn't stop the bears."
The attack on the Jones ranch and the expanding bear population is the focus of this week's Face The State program, which will air on KBZK and KXLF on Sunday 9:30 a.m.